Wildlife Centres, Zoos & Aquariums

There are plenty of great spaces in the Lake District for your children to interact with and learn about all sorts of different animals, birds, insects, and reptiles. Most of these attractions also have opportunities to feed the animals, as well as great facilities and entertainment for children of all ages. With an aquarium, zoos, farm parks, and aviaries, the Lake District is a great place to learn about and appreciate wildlife.

The Lakes Aquarium

The Lakes Aquarium

Bringing the lakes of the world to the lakes of Cumbria, The Lakes Aquarium is a highly popular attraction on the shores of Lake Windermere. Here you can see species both native to the UK and from further afield with both aquatic and land-loving animals on display. The Aquarium is situated at one of the stopping points for both the Windermere Lake Cruises and the Lakeside and Haverthwaite railway with combined tickets for all three available.

The Gincase

The Gincase

The Gincase provides a great day out for children, especially those who love tractors and animals. This working farm close to Silloth in north-west Cumbria features animal paddocks, an animal barn, a huge indoor play area as well as an outdoor adventure playground, go karts and quad bikes, and a delightful café serving scrumptious cakes.

South Lakes Safari Zoo

South Lakes Safari Zoo

Offering an alternative to the traditional zoo experience, South Lakes Safari Zoo gives you the chance to stroll alongside the animals in open areas. Visitors are invited to hand feed many of the animals and get up close to exotic species from around the world. The zoo has recently expanded and is involved in conservation efforts for some of its endangered breeds. Children under 16 who accompany a paying adult get in free, offering great value for money for families.

Lakeland Maze Farm Park

Lakeland Maze Farm Park

Perfect for families with children, the Lakeland Maze Farm Park is an all-weather attraction that will allow your little ones to burn off energy during the school holidays. Featuring a gigantic maze made out of maize, the farm is filled with plenty of activities including animal feeding, trampolines, outdoor karting and tractor rides. There is a large indoor soft play centre, as well as barns packed with activities and displays.

Lakeland Bird of Prey Centre

Lakeland Bird of Prey Centre

Get up close to over 150 birds of prey at the Lakeland Bird Of Prey Centre. This sanctuary allows you to walk through the aviaries before settling down to watch flying demonstrations from these magnificent creatures. The centre is located within a walled garden in the grounds of Lowther Castle so you could combine your visit with a tour of the castle on the same day.

Lake District Wildlife Park

Lake District Wildlife Park

A hidden gem overlooked by the dominating fell of Skiddaw, the Lake District Wildlife Park offers great value for money with over one hundred species of animal viewable on the 25-acre estate. Animals roam free in the fields and during your visit you will see zebras, meerkats, and lynx amongst others. There are also almost daily demonstrations of birds of prey as well as fabulous play facilities for children.